Man at heart of Maple Leaf Gardens sexual abuse scandal dies

Sports

FILE – In this April 22, 2014, file photo, Gordon Stuckless arrives at court in Toronto. Stuckless, the man at the heart of the Maple Leaf Gardens sexual abuse scandal, died Thursday night, April 9, 2020, at a hospital in Hamilton, Ontario, after a brain hemorrhage Tuesday, lawyer Ari Goldkind said. Stuckless was in his early 70s. Stuckless was sentenced in 2016 to 6 1/2 years in prison — six after credit for his time on house arrest — for more than 100 offenses related to the sexual abuse of 18 boys over three decades. He was released to a halfway house on day parole in December. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP, File)

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The man at the heart of the Maple Leaf Gardens sexual abuse scandal has died.

Gordon Stuckless died Thursday night at a hospital in Hamilton after a brain hemorrhage Tuesday, lawyer Ari Goldkind said. Stuckless was in his early 70s.

Stuckless was sentenced in 2016 to 6 1/2 years in prison — six after credit for his time on house arrest — for more than 100 offenses related to the sexual abuse of 18 boys over three decades. He was released to a halfway house on day parole in December.

“Mr. Stuckless left a trail of devastation in his wake. Of that there can be no doubt. I saw that firsthand in my representation of him over the last decade,” Goldkind said in an email. “Upon his release from jail, he made a vow to never repeat the monstrous acts he committed that ruined so many innocent young lives.”

Stuckless was a volunteer hockey coach and teaching assistant on top of working at the famed Toronto arena. A report by the Parole Board of Canada said Stuckless was unsure of how many boys he abused and acknowledged that more could potentially come forward in the future.

Stuckless previously pleaded guilty in 1997 for sex assaults on 24 boys while he worked as an equipment manager at Maple Leaf Gardens between 1969 and 1988. He was freed on statutory release in that case in 2001 after serving two-thirds of his sentence.

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